How do Seahawks draft picks fit in their defense? Jake Heaps explains
If there is one takeaway from the 11-player haul the Seattle Seahawks made in the 2019 NFL Draft, it’s the emphasis they put on defense.
Even though the Seahawks had a nearly even split of six defensive players and five offensive players selected in the draft, the order in which those picks came speaks to both how deep the draft was on defense and how important it was to general manager John Schneider and coach Pete Carroll to add on that side of the ball.
The Seahawks used their first-round pick on defensive end L.J. Collier, and three of their first four selections were defensive players. Not only that, but the Hawks added multiple players on the defensive line, at linebacker and in the defensive backfield in the draft.
After breaking down the Seahawks’ five offensive picks earlier in the week, 710 ESPN Seattle’s Jake Heaps now sets his sights on the defense in the attached video to share what about each defensive draft pick caught Seattle’s eye and how they will fit in with the Seahawks’ system.
Here’s a quick look at each of the defensive players covered plus a link to a video of their highlights.
L.J. Collier, DE, TCU (29th overall)
Though Collier was a bit of a late bloomer in college, not finding his way into a starting role until his senior season in 2018, the 6-foot-2, 283-pound defensive end earned first-team All-Big 12 honors with six sacks, 11.5 tackles for loss, 42 total tackles and five QB hits. Highlight video
Marquise Blair, S, Utah (47th overall)
At 6-2 and 195 pounds, Blair doesn’t look like Seahawks legend Kam Chancellor, but his hard-hitting mentality reminds many of Seattle’s former “enforcer.” Blair recorded 106 tackles, four passes defended and two interceptions for the Utes last season. Highlight video
Cody Barton, LB, Utah (88th overall)
In four seasons at Utah, the 6-2, 230-pound Barton finished with 235 tackles, nine sacks and one interception. He can play all three linebacker spots and is expected to be an asset on special teams. Highlight video
Ugochukwu Amadi, DB, Oregon (132nd overall)
The winner of the 2018 Lombardi Award, which is given annually to the top FBS player regardless of position and based on the criteria of “performance and leadership honed by character and resiliency,” had six interceptions last year, and Oregon coach Mario Cristobal called Amadi the quarterback of his defense. Highlight video
Ben Burr-Kirven, LB, Washington (142nd overall)
The nation’s leading tackler and the winner of the Pac-12 Pat Tillman Defensive Player of the Year award in 2018, Burr-Kirven at the very least should make an impact on special teams for the Seahawks. Highlight video
Demarcus Christmas, DT, Florida State (209th overall)
The 6-3, 293-pound Christmas was third-team All-ACC as a redshirt senior in 2018. Highlight video